Books: Swede on a Tightrope

THE ETERNAL SMILE & OTHER STORIES (389 pp.)—Pār Lagerkvist—Random House ($4.50).

Once upon a time a multitude of souls, sick & tired of living in eternity, decided to visit God and demand a showdown.

Hundreds of years passed before they found Him—"an old man sawing wood" by the light of a dim lantern. "We are the life which you have brought forth," said the deputies. "We are all the living who have struggled and struggled, who have suffered and suffered, who have doubted and believed . . . What have you meant by us?"...

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